Hi all- my husband and I are brand new to prepping- we no we are behind the ball on this, but better late than never. I do not know how to garden, can, sew- but I will learn. We did purchase a 3 month supply of emergency food from my patriot and plan to purchase another soon. If you were to give one piece of advice to get us started what would that be?
cindi, My best advice is not to panic. We all were brand new once, and none of us have done it perfect. In fact most of us have learned from our mistakes and those of others. There is a lot of knowledge here, just ask if you have a question. Three months of survival food is good, but do you have water to re-hydrate it?
Cindi, there's a learning curve to growing food. I always recommend people start right away. It isn't necessary to plant an acre or even to have land, but start growing something from seed and into pots or a 4x4 section of ground, etc. Even micro greens or wheat grass, anything, to tether your soul to the life force of the soil and plants.
If you have a place to plant next year I recommend you keep a steady eye on veggies for what is called the "hunger gap." In summer you'll want juicy ripe tomatoes, but the hunger gap is something I'm focused on for next winter.
These veggies are winter stored crops that feed during the deepest portions of winter when the days are too short to grow crops even with a greenhouse: winter squash (and pumpkins), cabbage, root crops like turnip and rutabaga, overwinter onions (there are spring summer and winter onions), and the most important crop in any garden: Sweet potatoes even if you don't like them. Most calorie dense veggie you can grow in the Ozarks area. (Sweet potatoes are started in early summer and come ready about October to be cured a month or 2 before eating).
Even if you don't need to want the winter crops right away there is the comfort of food security knowing there are pumpkins and root crops stored away should you need.
But if you do have land, start small with only a few crops to avoid being overwhelmed.
Decide what you want to focus in the garden growing, especially those winter crops. Buy them in the store and begin cooking and preparing. Not only do we need to learn to process and cook them, our stomachs need to become acclimated to them. If all you have is broccoli, for instance, and someone should steal your supply but you don't eat broccoli routinely, your stomach will revolt.
Comfort food !!!
There are two things to address: Food insecurity and potential starvation. Food security is just as important and even more so if you have kids.
Candy bars or any other type of treat that simply gives us a mental and emotional boost are crucial in my experience, something that chocolate does very well.
In the past I would make homemade batches of cinnamon rolls or some crappy home made brownies. My family is not fond of cinnamon rolls but when we were food insecure, that treat was a crowd pleaser as well as the crappy chocolate brownies. I simply made them feel better to have these treats.
Chocolate is a good comfort food! And the powders and baking cubes are getting expensive.
Hello Cindi. I agree with the aforementioned guidance of starting small & not panicking. Every expert was once a novice. It's great that you & your husband are starting! That alone puts you all way ahead of literally hundreds of thousands of people! Yes, the food supply is great, and having emergency water supplies are helpful too. There are numerous areas for prepping - food/water/medical/self defense/communications/shelter/heat - and the list goes on! It can seem overwhelming, but connecting with others helps. Additionally, watching some educational vids on said topics can really start to broaden your knowledge base, whether it's on situational awareness, bartering, or canning foods, you'll find the things that interest you most and begin to develop your skills. Welcome to the site!